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Review: Ironsword - Underground

Label: Alma Mater Records
Year released: 2023
Duration: 21:29
Tracks: 4
Genre: Heavy Metal


Review online: December 23, 2023
Reviewed by: Sargon the Terrible
Readers' Rating
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Rated 4/5 (80%) (6 Votes)

This is an EP put out to keep us stoked for the promised full-length sometime in 2024. After the sheer mastery of Servants of Steel, I was hoping this would really kill, but it is pretty much standard set of Ironsword songs. This is the band much more in their midpaced/slow mode, which is not usually where they do their best work. This EP features guest drums on "A Witch Shall Be Born" by original Manilla Road skin-pounder Rick Fisher, and the song is a suitably Manilla Road-sounding song. Tann does his best Mark Shelton impression (which is a pretty good one) and the song goes hard for that epic vibe. Guest drums on the closing track "Tombs of Eternity" are by classic-era Manilla Road drummer Randy Foxe, and this is the one song on the EP that actually cranks up some speed and feels a lot more lively. The rest of the drumming is by "Neudi" Neuderth—who was the last Manilla Road drummer, and a killer musician I expect great work from.

I feel like I am damning this with faint praise, because it is pretty good but not as good as I hoped. If you are a fan of Ironsword or Manilla Road then this is something you shouldn't miss, but the songwriting is pretty standard for this band, and the production is oddly weak after the barbaric sound of their last full-length. This is good, but this band has done better, and I hope they will again soon.

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More about Ironsword...
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Review: Return of the Warrior (reviewed by Sargon the Terrible)
Review: Servants of Steel (reviewed by Bruno Medeiros)
Review: Servants of Steel (reviewed by Sargon the Terrible)
Interview with Tann (Guitars/vocals) on May 4, 2004 (Interviewed by Sargon the Terrible)
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